The coach intimated that Branislav Ivanovic’s place in the Blues first team may be under threat.
The Serbian defender—typically such an effective presence both defensively and offensively for Chelsea—has struggled in the Pensioners’ first two matches of the season.
Ivanovic struggled against Jefferson Montero of Swansea City as the Welsh side secured a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge. Against City, as Chelsea lost 3-0, he was also troubled when faced with Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero, and was booked early in the second half.
Chelsea have moved to broaden their defensive options, and the signing of Ghana defender Baba was confirmed by his erstwhile employers FC Augsburg on Sunday evening via a statement on their their official website.
— FC Augsburg (@FCAugsburg) August 16, 2015
Ostensibly, the Black Star will arrive as a replacement with Filipe Luis, who returned to Atletico Madrid after only one season in London.
However, when questioned about the new arrival, Mourinho indicated that Baba could allow Chelsea’s current left-back Cesar Azpilicueta to return to his natural position of right-back, or at least increase the pressure on Ivanovic.
“It’s important because he is a left-back and he can compete with Azpilicueta,” the Chelsea manager told reporters, when asked about the arrival of Baba [as per Goal].
“At the same time, by being a left-back, Azpilicueta can compete with Ivanovic for the right-back position.
“This player replaces Filipe Luis in the balance of the squad. He is a player that we need for that balance.”
Despite being only 21, Baba has already demonstrated his qualities in the Bundesliga, as he helped Augsburg to the Europa League, while he also starred for Ghana at the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations.